Review – Shatter (Unbreakable Bonds #2) by Jocelynn Drake & Rinda Elliott

Reviewed by: E
How I got this book: ARC from the author

Maverick trauma surgeon Ashton “Snow” Frost keeps the world at a distance, relying only on his three closest friends to keep him connected. But when a ghost from their past returns to Cincinnati, Snow stands to lose everyone he loves. Framed for murder and reeling from attacks on his friends, Snow is pushed to his breaking point.

Jude Torres won’t let the doc shatter. The paramedic has been attracted to the doctor since he first laid eyes on him at the hospital, even if the arrogant, solitary man doesn’t fit into any of his plans. One hot, reckless kiss shows that Snow isn’t who he appears to be. And one night together will never be enough. Jude will fight for the doc.

Fight to keep him whole. Fight to keep him safe. Fight to simply keep him.
This blurb came from Goodreads.

I really enjoyed Shiver the first book in this series and found myself fascinated by the four best friends. The way they took care of each other and were willing to do just about anything to keep one another safe was really touching. It was evident in Shiver that at least three of the four had some deep emotional wounds and secrets so I was looking forward to finding out their pasts and seeing their demons vanquished. Since Snow’s way of dealing with his stress as a trauma surgeon and his nightmares was rather violent and potentially the most self-destructive of the friends I was really hoping I wouldn’t have to wait too long for his story. Thankfully Drake and Elliott felt the same.

Shatter focuses on Snow, his past, and in some cases sadly drags his friends into a not so good present. I really loved getting to know Snow and understanding why he dealt with stress the way he did. I was also surprised he was able to keep going under the amount of stress and then guilt he picked up. It was really good to see him get a chance to relax and let go of always being in charge. I also think he exorcises some of his demons and gets much closer to a mentally healthy life. He only reached that point after going through some really rough experiences which left me thankful this was a romance because I knew somehow something good would happen by the end.

I enjoyed several of the new characters introduced in this story but found myself really liking Jude and his paramedic partner. I thought their friendship with each other and Jude’s family was a nice counterpart to the closeness of Snow and his friends. To me it meant Jude was less likely to feel left out or excluded. What I thought fascinating was how I didn’t get the same feeling in reverse, and as a result thoroughly enjoyed some scenes when Snow was out of his comfort zone. I also thought that Jude was perfect! He was dominate in a certain sense but also such a caretaker. His base personality fit so well with his profession and was the perfect foil/balance for Snow. Watching them together and seeing Snow’s nervousness alongside Jude’s certainty was a delicious treat.

I both enjoyed and appreciated the moments of humor and relationship building not just between Snow and Jude but across the group of friends and their widening circle of friends. They needed every advantage they could get as they dealt with someone from their past who had his eyes set on ruining Snow before finally killing him. Ruining Snow meant destroying everything and everyone he cared about along the way to include his career and his friends. Each time I thought things had reached a peak of evilness something else happened which knocked Snow and his crew back down and left me clinging to the edge of my seat as the suspense and stakes kept rising.

Snow and his friends certainly sufferened some harsh blows and traumatic events which left everyone reeling but I thought their bonds grew tighter over the course of the story which will continue to help them recover. I am however left wondering how the results of a certain incident will continue to play over the course of this series. I have my fingers crossed that Drake and Elliott won’t let me done with whatever happens and its execution.

I really liked reading Shatter I can certainly rave over Jude for ages and how he and Snow meshed. I also liked watching the interplay between the characters because one of the things I love is when the main characters have close relationships outside of their romantic interest. In this particular series I don’t think any of the main group of friends would still be living without the others. I really hope Drake and Elliott can write quickly because I NEED to see what happens next.

I give Shatter an A-

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